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Warning: TV May Be Ruining Your Financial Health!

September 21, 2009


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Photo Credit: The G


Find out what people want and give it to them!

This is a well known phrase used in marketing and advertising.  It says that you get people to buy your items when you appeal to their natural desires.

What They Sell

Think about it for a minute.  Every commercial you’ve ever seen typically has one driving theme — happiness

Essentially what the agency is trying to tell you is that you’ll be happier to some degree or another if you have our product — or you’ll be worse off and unhappy if you don’t.

Whether it’s beer, cars, razors, deodorant or the  newest drug on the market, the message is clear.

The next time you watch TV take a deeper look at that message. 

What does the company want you to do?  They want you to buy their product of course.

But why?

They are appealing to our natural desire for happiness, comfort and joy.

Why It Matters

There’s a reason why companies will spend several million dollars for a 30-second TV spot during the Super Bowl.  It’s not because they like to spend money.

They do this because there will be some people who go and buy their products or services.  There is a return on investment for the company. 

Companies don’t advertise for fun, they want to make a profit. 

Don’t get me wrong – there’s nothing wrong with making a profit, but we need to be mindful of how it affects us.

How Does This Affect Us?

TV can be a breeding ground for greed, materialism, covetousness, envy and discontentment. 

Advertisers appeal to our natural desire for happiness by getting us to think we need to drive the right kind of car – drink the right kind of beer – shave with the right kind of razor – and use the right kind of prescription drugs. 

And when you do all of those things you’ll have better sex, more power and greater joy!

Don’t give in to the temptation of discontentment and envy and think to yourself  – if I only had this thing – then I’d be happy.  

Is TV Affecting Your Financial Health?

Do you find yourself buying the latest and greatest things and racking up debt just to keep up with the Joneses or because you think those things will make you happy? 

Are you going out and using credit cards for something you know you don’t need, but just feel like you have to have?

The scary thing is that we may not even realize we do this!  It’s such a natural tendency in us that we fail to recognize it. 

The next time you watch TV, pay attention to the message and how it affects you. 

What To Do About It

Throwing your TV away and resolving to never watch it again will not deal with the root of your envy or discontentment. 

So what’s the answer?

1. The first step is to be aware of how you’re affected by TV.

2. Secondly, we need to realize that lasting joy is not found in the newest products and the latest gadgets.

3. Lastly, we need to understand that lasting joy  is only found in a loving, personal relationship with Jesus Christ — who gave up everything including his own life — so that for those who believe and follow him, they could have eternal happiness and joy in Him.

Being vigilant while you watch TV will help guard your financial wellbeing and your spiritual health.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. September 21, 2009 3:44 pm

    It is important to not be sucked in to what is being offered. But this isn’t to say advertising is evil, or even that there is anything inherently wrong with purchasing something you saw advertised on TV.

    If you are shopping for a midsized sedan and you see a commercial for a great mid sized sedan it may influence your decision. But don’t buy the car on a whim just because you saw a commercial.

    • September 21, 2009 7:52 pm

      I agree. Advertising in and of itself isn’t evil – my point is we need to watch out how we are being affected financially through the advertisements.

  2. September 21, 2009 7:28 pm

    Thanks for the post Jason. Getting to the root of the issue is the best way to deal with things for sure… and no matter what medium of media is at play beware of falsity, lies and temptation (Colossians 2:8)

    • September 21, 2009 7:54 pm

      Good summary. You’re right, no matter what it is we need to be on guard.

  3. ontheroadto1m permalink
    September 22, 2009 4:11 pm

    I completely agree. I also take the point made in another comment that advertising is not evil by itself. However, it can have damaging effects on some people, specially the most vulnerable ones -like children.

    I think that ads teach kids that the way to be appreciated is by having more things. I’d be willing to bet that the less ads they watch, the happier they’ll be.

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